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Monitoring the audio buffer

Hello

Is there a way to check if foobar2000's audio buffer ever gets empty during playback? I'm experiencing occasional glitches (robotic "buzzes") when my hard drive is under heavy load. However I did not experience those glitches before switching to Win10 from Win7 under the same conditions.

Thanks.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #1
No idea about your actual question, but you may try this tool to see if your system can do "real time": http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon
I had a laptop with a battery control driver that caused tenths of a second latency every now and then, i.e. multiple dropouts every song. Disabled it, problem solved, except battery died fairly quickly.
High Voltage socket-nose-avatar

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #2
No idea about your actual question, but you may try this tool to see if your system can do "real time": http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon
I had a laptop with a battery control driver that caused tenths of a second latency every now and then, i.e. multiple dropouts every song. Disabled it, problem solved, except battery died fairly quickly.

I've had similar problems with my laptop (HP) that expected a 120w adapter. When using a 90 watt power supply I had glitches with sound and especially with video and sound. Searched for a long time until I found out the problems disappeared when I disconnected the adapter and ran via battery. Even then it took some time to find out it was because of the 90 watt psu that put the laptop into some sort of throttling (invisible to the monitoring software).

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #3
No idea about your actual question, but you may try this tool to see if your system can do "real time": http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon
I had a laptop with a battery control driver that caused tenths of a second latency every now and then, i.e. multiple dropouts every song. Disabled it, problem solved, except battery died fairly quickly.
I ran that tool and it didn't report anything unusual. I will post a screenshot later.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #4
No idea about your actual question, but you may try this tool to see if your system can do "real time": http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon
I had a laptop with a battery control driver that caused tenths of a second latency every now and then, i.e. multiple dropouts every song. Disabled it, problem solved, except battery died fairly quickly.

I've had similar problems with my laptop (HP) that expected a 120w adapter. When using a 90 watt power supply I had glitches with sound and especially with video and sound. Searched for a long time until I found out the problems disappeared when I disconnected the adapter and ran via battery. Even then it took some time to find out it was because of the 90 watt psu that put the laptop into some sort of throttling (invisible to the monitoring software).
I'm on a desktop with a decent Corsair PSU. Power management is set to "High performance" in Windows.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #5
when my hard drive is under heavy load

Ideas:
Have you checked indexing or defrag schedules? That could be different between your Win7 and Win10 installs.
Have you tried to disconnect other devices? Windows sometimes does annoying things when it cannot communicate successfully with a device - that could hang I/O to other devices.

(I assume you have tried to increase fb2k's buffering?)
High Voltage socket-nose-avatar

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #6
Here are the Latency tests (ran while the hard drive was under load).
Where should I go from here? My network drivers were up to date, so I've downgraded them just check the problem wasn't introduced by the newer drivers, but the problem persists.


Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #7
I'd disable the network driver or turn off the network hardware just to narrow things down.
As was mentioned and if you haven't, explore setting foobar2000's buffering for more time.
If your audio hardware supports it, try using some other output driver in foobar2000, e.g. WASAPI, ASIO, Kernel Streaming.  They each have their own options dealing with things like interrupt priority, hardware audio buffer size, etc. that may help.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #8
I've tried two things: doubling the audio buffer in foobar2000 (to 2000 milliseconds) and disabling the Ethernet controller.

Doubling the audio buffer didn't help. I still had audio artifacts when the hard drive and ethernet controller were heavily used (legal torrenting in the background). These artifacts also occur on Youtube and I have audio AND video artifacts with VLC as well (here is a video of this problem occurring, this is not my video but the "buzz" is exactly the same).

I've disabled the Ethernet controller and ran LatencyMon again. This time the results are OK, and I didn't hear any artifacts.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #9
In the past I've bought a USB network adapter for a laptop when I couldn't get network drivers for the builtin network hardware that didn't have too much latency.
FWIW I keep my audio buffering up at about 10 or 20 seconds, then I don't have problems when a drive needs to spin up, etc.


Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #11
You could try increase audio application priorities (including WASAPIHost*.exe or ASIO*.exe etc) and decrease torrent and other problem apps priorities.

https://www.raymond.cc/blog/permanently-set-process-priority-in-windows-task-manager-with-prio/

What ethernet adapter you have?
I tried that, and while I didn't give a careful listen, the LatencyMon graph looked the same as the one I've posted in reply #6. In my opinion the problem isn't CPU-related because my CPU usage stays at reasonable levels.

My ethernet adapter is an onboard Realtek (my motherboard is a Gigabyte P55A-UD3R). I'm using the latest drivers for it. I've changed some advanced settings in the device's properties: there are several options to "offload" CRC calculations to the chip which is supposed to lower CPU usage. I've turned these options off (they were on), but it didn't help.

Since my problem isn't exclusive to foobar2000 (all audio applications suffer from it), could a mod move my thread to a more appropriate section and rename it, please?

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #12
I see you tracked the latency to network. If you happen to have Gigabyte's monitoring or overclocking tools you should try removing those. Also I remember a few cases where people fixed their DPC latency issues by disabling Intel Speedstep in BIOS. Could be worth testing.

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #13
I tried that, and while I didn't give a careful listen, the LatencyMon graph looked the same as the one I've posted in reply #6. In my opinion the problem isn't CPU-related because my CPU usage stays at reasonable levels.
My latency graphs are horrible too, but i never have audio problems in any device (W7-64). No Realtek NIC though.

Priorities matter even with low loads, some progs could hog too many cpu cycles before audio app and cause clicks or pops. IO-load problems can be harder to sort out.

http://thewindowsclub.thewindowsclubco.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Processor-Scheduling.jpg

I have this option set to background services.

 

Re: Monitoring the audio buffer

Reply #14
I see you tracked the latency to network. If you happen to have Gigabyte's monitoring or overclocking tools you should try removing those. Also I remember a few cases where people fixed their DPC latency issues by disabling Intel Speedstep in BIOS. Could be worth testing.
I don't have Gigabyte's tools installed. I disabled Intel EIST in the BIOS but it didn't fix the problem.
The next step is to reinstall Windows 10, then reinstall Windows 7 if that doesn't work.

 
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